Ellisville McDonald’s employee named Crew Member of the Year
By: Kate Uptergrove
Jamie Eyrich, who has worked at the Ellisville McDonald’s for 22 years and has a loyal following of customers, was recently recognized as the 2012 Crew Person of the Year for the company’s Heartland Region.
The award ceremony was held Feb. 5 at the Ameristar Casino – St. Charles and caught Eyrich completely by surprise. He thought he was attending the event to provide customer service tips to his fellow crew members and was delighted to learn that some of them were getting awards.
“When his name was called he was shocked,” said Becca Schuh, manager of the Ellisville McDonald’s. “And his parents were so proud.”
Sharing in that pride were the restaurant’s owners John and Michelle Banducci, Eyrich’s fellow crew members and his loyal customers, many of who nominated him for the award.
“If anyone is worthy of this award, it’s Jamie,” said Bob Kraus, of Ellisville. “Most of us wrote letters on his behalf.”
Kraus, along with his mother, Helen, is part of the regulars that begin their day at McDonald’s seven days a week.
“We’ve known Jamie since he started at McDonald’s,” Helen said. “If we stop by to pick up a quick meal and I’m in the car, he comes outside to hug me.”
That close relationship is one Eyrich is happy to share with all of his customers, his friends – and is perhaps why his customers have also become friends to each other.
“Most of us are here every morning,” said Bill Brown, of Gray Summit.
The fact that customers would drive in from as far away as Gray Summit, often past other McDonald’s, surprises only outsiders. It’s not about the food, or the coffee that doesn’t stop coming, it’s about the camaraderie.
“I know if I treat my customers right they’ll come back to see me,” Eyrich explained. “When I first wake up in the morning, I think about my customers.”
Eyrich works four or five days a week, but said, “I’ll come in whenever they need me.”